Nickel Plate Road #79

Built for the New York, Chicago and St. Louis Railroad or the Nickel Plate Road, this 1000 horsepower yard switcher was built in May, 1953 by the American Locomotive Works with the electrical components supplied by the General Electric Company and was delivered directly to the "Nickel Plate Road". It was used in yard and transfer service and was operated in the Cleveland area for much of the 1950's and 1960's.

In 1964, the Nickel Plate Road was purchased by the Norfolk & Western Railway. The unit was painted blue and became their number 2079. The Norfolk & Western retired the unit on December 6, 1974 and it was sold through a dealer to the Wyandotte Terminal Railroad in Michigan in 1976 where it became their number 107. In 1982, it was sold to RSA Leasing in Sodus, New York. They leased it to the Allegheny Southern Railroad in Pennsylvania where it became their number 17. The unit was returned to Sodus, New York in 1985.

In September, 1987, it was purchased and moved to the Museum by members of the museum. In 1993 and 1994, it was restored to its original Nickel Plate paint scheme and number

This locomotive is privately owned and is not on public display.

Technical Data

  • American Locomotive Works (Alco)
  • S-4 yard switcher
  • Built May, 1953
  • 1000 horsepower Alco 539 6-cylinder primemover


  • Nickel Plate #79 Starting Up
    Listen as our Alco RS-1, Eastman Kodak #9, idles while our Alco S-4, Nickel Plate Road #79, starts on the next track over. On top of the idling of the #9, you can hear the low oil pressure alarm bell ring in 79's cab as the start button is pressed. This is followed by several blasts of exhaust as 79's engine comes to life and eventually comes up to speed to provide a double dose of the sound of dueling Alco 539 diesels.

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